Vikings explained: What really happened to Halfdan in Vikings?

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Vikings airs on History and Amazon Prime and the historical drama is now in its sixth season, with part A finishing on a major cliffhanger. Fans are eagerly awaiting season six part B, and in the meantime, they are remembering some of the main characters from across the series. One of the main characters was Halfdan (played by Jasper Pääkkönen) and has everything you need to know about what happened to him.

What really happened to Halfdan in Vikings?

Halfdan the Black was introduced in the fourth season of Vikings as the brother of King Harald Finehair (Peter Franzén).

He and his brother arrived in Kattegat on a ship along with a further 600 warriors, and he was excited about their future as leaders.

The great warrior was later seen raiding a Frankish farm and he brutally murdered families with the help of several other fighters.

He ended up getting badly injured after being shot with a crossbow during a battle with the Franks, but he managed to survive and was taken home on a ship.

Unlike his brother, Halfdan was more concerned about adventure and discovering new places than gaining more power.


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He separated from his brother to take part in an expedition across the Mediterranean Sea with Bjorn Ironside (Alexander Ludwig). Halfdan told Bjorn he has no interest in taking over Kattegat.

Halfdan’s love and loyalty to his brother was clear when he killed Ellisif (Sophie Vavasseur) who betrayed Harald by falling in love with another man.

He also developed a friendship with Bjorn after Bjorn saved his life during a trip to Sicily, and Halfdan later took sides with Bjorn when Harald decided to conquer Kattegat.

During the battle, Halfdan and Harald came face-to-face, and the former was quick to kill his brother.

Fans are wondering whether King Harald really killed his own brother as not much is known about his history.

According to historians, Halfdan the Black was actually the father of Harald Finehair – not his brother.

He was the king of Vestfold and belonged to the House of Yngling, and his son Harald eventually became the first king of Norway.

Instead, he had a brother called Olaf, with whom he shared some of his kingdom. He married Ragnhild and they had their son Harald.

Norse sagas suggest Halfdan actually drowned when he fell through some ice on a lake on his way back from Hadeland.

His horse-driven sleigh broke through the ice and he died falling into the frozen water. He was buried in Ringerike.

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Historians are still not certain of how much of Halfdan’s story is true, as there are no contemporary sources that mention him.

Some details about his life are thought to be based on legend, so it is not clear what really happened to him.

Halfdan became a fan-favourite in the series and History Canada Tweeted a tribute to his character after he died in season five.

They posted a video of Halfdan on the battlefield with the message: “RIP Halfdan. May more adventures await you in Valhalla.”

One fan said: “That’s so messed up that his brother killed him. Those Vikings are cold-blooded.”


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Other fans said he was a “great warrior” and they were sad to see the series lose such a great character.

One viewer said on Twitter: “That really sucked, we were just getting to know Halfdan. @JasperPaakkonen gave a wonderful performance of a very loyal Viking.”

Fans of the series were left with goosebumps after hearing Halfdan and his brother sing together for the last time before the huge battle.

His character made a huge impact on viewers, with one fan saying: “The wisest words from the mid season finale were spoken by Halfdan.

“Miserable that we had to say goodbye to him. Many thanks @JasperPaakkonen and good luck with everything. We will be following and supporting you in your new and upcoming projects.”

Vikings will return to History and Amazon Prime before the end of 2020

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